About this website.
This website offers a selection of the writings of brothers George
A. Platz and Richard S. Platz, and will include novels, short
stories, and nonfiction. (Please note: The writings on this web
site are provided solely for personal reading by visitors to the
site. They may be copied or downloaded for that purpose only.
They may not be distributed to other persons, altered in any way,
or used for any other purpose without the express written consent
of the authors, who reserve all rights in such works.) Comments,
questions and licensing inquiries are welcome. Send them to:
Platz Brothers, P.O. Box 797, Blue Lake, CA 95525.
About the Platz Brothers.
George A. Platz practiced law in Chicago from 1964 to 2002.
He received his B.S. degree from Northwestern University in 1960
and his J.D. degree from Harvard Law School in 1963, where he
was an editor of the Harvard Law Review. He is currently
retired and spends his time at his farm in southwestern Michigan,
his home near Chicago, and his winter residence in Thatcher, Arizona.
Richard S. Platz has retired from the practice of law
in Humboldt County, California. Rick received his B.A. degree
in philosophy from Northwestern University in 1964. In 1967 he
received his JD degree from the University of California at Berkeley,
serving as an associate editor of the California Law Review.
After practicing law in Berkeley and Oakland, Rick spent two years
in Mexico, near Guadalajara. In 1977 he established his sole general
practice in Blue Lake, a rural town in Northern California with
a population of 1200, where he served as City Attorney for more
than 32 years. Besides writing, his interests include backpacking,
garden railroading, and playing a little basketball.
Click on a title to read a sample
of the Platz Brothers' works:
The Graham County Papers
is a collection of George's papers on the history of the highways, irrigation canals, and golf course in Graham County, Arizona, where the Platz brothers were born.
Art Appreciation is George's essay on the paintings of Vincent Van Gogh, their total value, and the total value of fine art in general
Three Weeks In Provence is George's essay on the adventures and misadventures he and his wife Andrea experienced on a trip to France in the Fall of 2014
Loyalists is George's play about how residents of New York City react to the invasion and capture of the city by the British in September 1776
In Pursuit of
the Elegant Trogon is Rick's account of the
brothers' search for the rare and colorful Elegant Trogon in the
canyons of Southeast Arizona.
One fine day some twenty years ago, as the Platz Brothers were
motoring serenely around the southern tip of Lake Michigan toward
Sugarwood Farm, and apropos of nothing in particular, George posed
the following question, "If time travel is possible, then
why don't we encounter anyone from the future?" Timestop
is Rick's response.
in Jefferson contains Rick's accounts of backpacking
and dayhiking. While not intended as a guidebook, they do nonetheless
contain photographs and data about trails, access to trailheads,
and the location of good campsites that hikers may find of use.
Located in the mountainous border region of northern California
and southern Oregon, the State of Jefferson is more a state of
mind than a political reality. But here lie plentiful wilderness
areas and undesignated wildlands. This is a work in progress.
from Adventures of a Weekend Farmer
is a selection from the essays in George's published book
on buying a farm and becoming an amateur surveyor, woodcutter,
bridge builder, and maple syrup maker. It also includes a gallery
of his wife Andrea's farm-related block prints.
For information about the Platz
Brothers' published works available on Amazon, click on a title
Characteristics is George's short novel about
Russian journalist Leo Krakin, who pursues an unusual second job
in an unlikely time and place--as a private investigator in the
Soviet Union of the early 1960s. He takes on a seemingly simple
task of finding a professor's missing manuscript that draws him
and his girlfriend Anya into a complex plot involving a murder
and an audacious Cold War deception concerning weapons of mass
destruction. In the course of his investigation, Krakin must deal
with the KGB, the Soviet Academy of Science and its director T.
D. Lysenko, the Soviet Army, a black market entrepreneur, a mysterious
American agent and a wealthy American publisher, and a key Soviet
government leader. Krakin evades one threat after another, only
to face a choice that, if he survives, will determine the course
of the rest of his life. Acquired Characterstics is now available
for purchase on Amazon.com in a deluxe trade paperback or Kindle
Island is George's imaginative novel
set in a world dominated by a democratic government obsessed with
equality and respect for human rights and indigenous cultures.
It follows the lives of a frontiersman who becomes a revered protector
of native tribes, an idealistic government leader who is deeply
concerned about the treatment of a racial minority of which he
is a member, a foreign despot who fiercely defends his homeland's
rigid class structure, and others who are destined to play a role
in an unexpected threat to that democratic government from outside
its borders. Strong characters, political intrigue, crucial battles,
and threats of nuclear devastation combine in a drama that deals
with universal issues of egalitarianism, pacifism, racism, and
cultural conflict. Hawk Island is now available for purchase on
Amazon.com in a deluxe trade paperback edition.
of a Weekend Farmer is a collection of George's
essays about the 80 acre farm in southwestern Michigan that he
and his wife have used as a weekend retreat for more than 30 years.
It covers some of the many things they learned as weekend farmers,
including what to do (and not do) in buying and enjoying country
property. Adventures of a Weekend Farmer is now available for
purchase on Amazon.com in a deluxe trade paperback or Kindle edition.
NOTE: you may read excerpts from these essays at no cost above.
Divine Wind is Rick's cybernetic courtroom
thriller flavored with mystery and romance. Attorney Jed LeBaron's
representation of a young black man accused of simple burglary
leads him to the federal courts for a determination of whether
a self-aware machine, a synthesis of genetic engineering and computer
science, is entitled to the basic civil rights of a human being.
LeBaron studied in Berkeley in the mid-Sixties and came away with
a law degree. But what next? Returning from a long stay under
the Mexican sun, he finds employment representing criminal defendants
in the down and dirty neighborhoods of Oakland. His employer,
Cedrick P. Collins, Esq., is a former longshoreman who earned
his law degree from correspondence school and is now the most
charismatic, elegantly dressed, and silver tongued African American
criminal defense lawyer in the Bay Area. Law school never prepared
LeBaron for coping with Collins' streetwise clients. This novel
contains a realistic look at the underside of the legal justice
system based on the author's own experience. 335 pages.
Magic and Delusion is Rick's third novel. The
young Crown Prince is not happy. The darling of the realm, he
is a product of an age of plenty in a kingdom protected by the
Sorcerer's magic from savage barbarians at the borders. The Prince
is representative of his generation, only somehow more so, as
if painted in vivid colors by a more passionate hand. One would
suppose him content. But inside he rages after the elusive goal
of perfection and is ravaged by unquenchable desire. Neither philosophy
nor faith can satisfy his longing. He turns to the Sorcerer for
mastery of the magical. But here there is no real magic, only
madness. Or to put it another way, there is only the magic of
the everyday world, and all attempts to suborn it are madness.
The result is a brutally honest coming-of-age novel, built from
the bricks and mortar of real life. Through romance, adventure,
humor, and a smattering of philosophy, Of Magic and Delusion
explores hope, love, obsession, addiction, and self-delusion.
Suitable for mature young adults prepared to face the truth.
at Angahuan was co-authored by Rick and James
A. Kline. It is a contemporary novel of adventure, suspense, and
international intrigue. Three young Americans are unwittingly
drawn into the maelstrom of Presidential politics in Mexico as
the Tarascan Indian people try to break the stranglehold of the
conservative PRI party. Psychologist Dr. Jeff Rivers and Archaeologist
Shimoko Johanson, in search of an ancient Tarascan treasure, and
attorney Jed LeBaron, a pawn in a political game, are thrown together
in the lava tubes beneath the re-awakening Paricutin volcano,
the headquarters of the shadowy leader of the secretive Ninos
del Tecolote. Completed in 1982, this novel foreshadows by a decade
the violent indigenous uprisings in the State of Chiapas, Mexico,
and the drug cartel and weapons wars of today. Co-author James
A. Kline is a retired psychologist currently living in southwest
Colorado. He has traveled extensively in Mexico. 300 pages.
and Other Fictions is a collection of Rick's more-or-less
autobiographical short stories. "Here is a handful of
short stories, composed from my memories and from my imagination.
They are recollections and they are fictions. That is to say,
they are all fictions." --from the author's Preface.
Prayer: Kerouac's novel and an unrequited love are the
twin blades cutting the fabric of a young man's destiny. Gandy
Dancer: What if Big Bad John had been a railroad man? The
Ride: A hitchhiker should be careful before climbing in. Pookie:
Jason Puker is a force of nature, but only one other person
knows the secret of his obsession. Hacienda: Ben and Charlize
buy a house, sight unseen, in the rural highlands of Mexico. Cover
Crop: A Zen trainee discovers that global warming may not
be an accident. Balance: At a contentious public hearing
a mayor may find it hard to achieve balance. Revelation: Without
a firm deadline, it's tough to get around to getting something
done. Even if it's God's will. 158 pages.
is a collection of Rick's fantastic short stories. "These
short stories are inventions of the mind. Some will be called
fantasies. Others science fiction. Still others daydreams. Or
myths. Or metaphors. The truth is that they are all merely inventions.
A few have such firm footing in science that they will almost
certainly come to pass. Others, not so much. What they have in
common is that they are the stuff of dreams." Web:
What would happen if the World Wide Web were to become conscious?
Genome: Their first task was to draw a blood sample from
the baby Jesus. After that, the mission got tricky. Mescalito:
In the blinding Chihuahuan desert, it can be difficult to
tell mirage from reality. New Moon: Following the pilot
truck down the one-lane corridor can sometimes lead to an unexpected
place. The House with the Christmas Lights: Herb thought
he saw a ghost. Or was it a creature lying nearer to his own mind?
Timestop: If time travel is possible, then why don't we
encounter anyone from the future? The Cabin: Lester Ames
is content to live alone in his log cabin in the woods. Until
he falls asleep. He Sees You When You're Sleeping: What
does Santa bring us when we're naughty? And five more stories
of the odd. 229 pages.
Point is like an old-time train steaming westward.
For the outdoor enthusiast it carries two backpacking stories,
a whitewater rafting account, and a tale of a Native American
snagged by the Border Patrol as he treks through the Sonoran desert.
Rick's first and only Western rides along. The baggage car holds
a robot butler, a paramilitary elementary school, four quantum
spaceships, and a flawed solution to overpopulation, among other
stories. The passengers are characters from the stories. Each
is different. Some are of different times, others of different
places, and still others of different realities. But the characters
all seem comfortable riding along together in this single volume,
and we trust that the reader will share their comfort. Man
Eaten: To sort things out Ernie Ackerman undertakes a solo
backpack trip to Man Eaten Lake. Mrs. Wigmore's Troops: Mrs.
Wigmore basks in the joy of the children at recess, until she
has to press the red button. Barriers: Along the Mexican
border Jacob Ramirez encounters unexpected barriers at the intersection
of three cultures. Three New Years: Evan Layton rings in
four New Years as he flies west. Pardners: In the Old West
a lawyer and a stage coach driver have to rely on his pardner.
The Woodsman: Lost in the woods, Nolan Anders learns to
be a woodsman. The Butler: The robot butler seems to think
he is somebody. River: Bunky gets more than a taste of
true wilderness on his first whitewater rafting trip. In Which
Universe?: The spaceships didn't look like spaceships at all.
And five more stories. 173 pages.
asks "What if your freedom to travel were taken away?"
After the death of his wife, Tildie, weary old dirt farmer Shadrack
Smithers feels the need to take a road trip beyond the boundaries
of his farm in the Surprise Valley of northeast California. He
wants to return to the Ozarks, where he and Tildie had begun their
family. Elan Groves, Shadrack's neighbor, wants to go along for
the ride, and so does his teenage daughter Katie. Problem is,
none of them have got a travel permit, and times have gotten weird.
Government is fragmenting. Civil order is breaking down. Not until
Shadrack makes it to his destination, do we learn the true purpose
of his journey. Along the way, encounters with an overworked policeman
and a rejuvenated preacher turn everything upside down. This is
the story of Shadrack's quest for solace on a circular journey
for redemption, and his deepening involvement in his home community.
Additional Items of Interest: Platzbrothers
fans will also want to read the following literary creations and
writings of interest:
The Dog and the Wolf,
a poem written by George's granddaughter Eva Platz-Walker,when
she was eleven years old.
You can read more of Rick's work at the following website: